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What can our hands tell us about our life, our work, our actions? What have they helped me with? What did they carry? Who have they held? Can we create a shared landscape of hands?

Hands that push, hands that pull. Hands that grasp. Hands that fold. Hands that hold each other. Our life story shapes our bodies. Personal and collective experiences are inscribed in our posture and movements. Can these experiences also be expressed through dance?

The choreographer Isabelle Schad and the dancers/choreographers Josephine Findeisen, Claudia Tomasi and the sculptor Nora Mertes, together with women from Bitterfeld-Wolfen, explore the tense relationship between self and world in dance: the central question here is the concept of subjectivity within a collective moving body that can only function as a whole: How can we perceive ourselves as part of a larger whole and what does this mean as a choreographic and visual practice as well as an attitude that one adopts?

Based on movement principles such as weight shifting, stretching and breathing techniques, professional and amateur dancers initially develop small sketches that focus on their own perception of the hands and, in resonance with their own story, tell something about society, being human and ageing. The video camera does not record images, but rather movement in the personal context of the dancers and during the joint rehearsals. It takes part as if it were an acting hand itself.

Gradually, a choreography and videography unfolds in the field of tension between inside and outside, intimacy and community, hand and labour, grasping and letting go, miniature and overall sequence. The resulting sculptures and landscapes are made from interwoven hands and images in order to face the events of our time in forms of connectedness.

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Concept, choreography and realisation: Isabelle Schad

Concept and realisation of video and space: Nora Mertes

Conceptual and choreographic support, realisation: Josephine Findeisen und Claudia Tomasi

Performance Humboldt Forum: Johanna Ackva, Christine Baßin, Heike Faber, Dorothee Fischer, Rita Gehlhar, Veronika Heisig, Katrin Jarczewski, Christine Koschmieder, Katrin Stephan, Gudrun Trommer, Claudia Tomasi,  Bärbel Verhooren, Sieglinde Walkow, Diana Wesser, Edda Westphal

Performance Bitterfeld-Wolfen: Christine Baßin, Heike Faber, Josephine Findeisen, Dorothee Fischer, Rita Gehlhar, Katrin Jarczewski, Christine Koschmieder, Katrin Stephan, Gudrun Trommer, Claudia Tomasi, Bärbel Verhooren, Sieglinde Walkow, Diana Wesser, Edda Westphal

Camera: Alberto Stievanin

Lighting design: Max Krispin

Sound: Damir Simunovic, in Zusammenarbeit mit Ivan Bartsch, Nora Mertes und Isabelle Schad

Live sound mixing: Ivan Bartsch

Technical Direction Humboldt Forum: Ivan Bartsch



A production by Isabelle Schad co-produced by Festival OSTEN/Kulturpark e.V. and the Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss. In cooperation with Frauen helfen Frauen e.V. / Frauenzentrum Wolfen.

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